The Blue Zone is our new expertise centre for screw conveyers. It is a marked section of our production hall where we test, analyse and inspect products. Take-off of our products also happens in this identifiable space for innovation and further professionalization.
The blue from Van Beek’s logo plays a decisive part in the Blue Zone. With the blue coloured floor in the corner of the production hall you step quite literally into the Blue Zone. Large movable screens and walls create even greater visual identifiability of the space where innovation, research and take-off take place. “These screens also form the decor for a uniform presentation of our new products”, says R&D Engineer Michiel van Mourik proudly. “A versatile section of the hall that we use to the optimum to improve our products and serve customers.”
The Blue Zone has three sections; The Test Room, The Brain Room and The Take-off. In the closed off ‘Test Room’ we test the running properties of various products for our customers. “We can for example research what effect a screw conveyer has on a particular product, such as for example marinated chicken pieces”, explains Van Mourik. “These tests may take 5 minutes, or a whole day. Together with the customer we look for a solution for a good end result.” The test machines can also be hired by the customer to test them in the production process itself.
In The Brain Room customers can read out, analyse and discuss all the test results directly. “We film and analyse each test”, says Van Mourik. “What do we find, what are the areas for improvement? We save samples of all the tests in a database so that we can predict the behaviour of the product in combination with a machine. With this knowledge we can estimate in advance what type of screw conveyor the customer needs for his product and we no longer have to identify this by experimentation during the project. We expand our knowledge and create the best possible application for the customer.” At present we use the Blue Zone for example for research into the least wear-sensitive seal, related to a particular product.
Where previously a machine was accepted by the customer on the shop floor, The Take-off space in the Blue Zone now acts as the take-off point. A section where the official transfer of a machine to the customer can take place in an appropriate way. “Now we can get on with this there”, continues Van Mourik contentedly. “With the Blue Zone as an expertise centre for screw conveyers you can involve a customer in the course of a project at an early stage. We can now complete a project in an appropriate way.”
The Blue Zone has been well received both internally and externally and is increasingly being used. If you are interested in the opportunities, contact us! You are warmly welcome for a (pre-) test.